Mayor Blake Inscore and the Crescent City Council, along with Del Norte County Board of Supervisors Chairman Chris Howard welcomed delegates of Sister City Rikuzentakata with an official proclamation Monday night. Inscore read from the proclamation, translated by special advisor Amya Miller as it was presented to Rikuzentakata Council Chair Mr. Ito.
“Whereas the City of Crescent City together with the County of Del Norte, do welcome our friends from Rikuzentakata, Japan with open arms and warm hearts, it is our hope that the activities we have arranged for your visit will be beneficial in learning about our local government, traditional cultures, business industries, emergency preparedness, and disaster recovery efforts and we anticipate that you will find meaningful conversation and connection with our citizens and community leaders,” it read, in part.
The proclamation noted former President Gerald Ford declared Oct. 2-13, 1975 as Japan-United States Friendship Days as a celebration in honor of the first state visit by a reigning Emperor of Japan, Emperor Hirohito, to America.
“In honor of that historical designation, the timing of your visit to our community, and the importance of the ongoing camaraderie between our two nations, as further sealed by the bond we have thus established,” the proclamation resolved, “the City Council of the City of Crescent City and the Board of Supervisors of the County of Del Norte, on behalf of our citizens, declare October 2, 2017 through October 13, 2017 as Friendship Days between our two communities,to be observed and celebrated by all who hold this connection dear.”
Del Norte High School students Samantha Fuller and Makenzie Webb shared insights from their previous visits to Rikunzentakata. Fuller called her visit “humbling,” adding that it has since changed her view of the entire world. Webb spoke of how students were able to overcome language barriers and communicate. She noted that the boat which drifted from Japan to Crescent City after the tsunami has brought many together between the cities and now has become a symbol of hope and friendship.
Miller read a letter from Rikuzentakata Mayor Futoshi Toba who said he regretted not being able to make it, but was unable to attend due to tensions caused by North Korea firing missiles over Japan. He said he hoped that he and other delegates could visit in 2018.
Inscore stressed his appreciation, understanding and dedication to moving forward with the sister city relationship.